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Stakeholder activism, managerial entrenchment and the congruence of interests between shareholders and stakeholders

  • Giovanni Cespa
  • Giacinta Cestone

We argue that when stakeholder protection is left to the voluntary initiative of managers, concessions to social activists and pressure groups can turn into a self-entrenchment strategy for incumbent CEOs. Stakeholders other than shareholders thus benefit from corporate governance rules putting managers under a tough replacement threat. We show that a minimal amount of formal stakeholder protection, or the introduction of explicit covenants protecting stakeholder rights in the firm charter, may deprive CEOs of the alliance with powerful social activists, thus increasing managerial turnover and shareholder value. These results rationalize a recent trend whereby well-known social activists like Friends of the Earth and active shareholders like CalPERS are showing a growing support for each other’s agendas.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 634.

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Date of creation: Jul 2002
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Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:634
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  1. Marco Pagano & Paolo F. Volpin, 2005. "The Political Economy of Corporate Governance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1005-1030, September.
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  7. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1988. "Value Maximization and the Acquisition Process," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 2(1), pages 7-20, Winter.
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  9. Ambec, Stefan & Barla, Philippe, 2002. "A theoretical foundation of the Porter hypothesis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 355-360, May.
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